Samanar Hills, Madurai

4.4
Samanar Hills or Samanar Malai is a hill rock complex located in Keelakuyilkudi village, from Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India. The hill has been declared as a protected monument by the Archaeological Survey of India.InformationSamanar means Jain in Tamil and malai means hill. This hill has caves where Tamil Jain (Samanar) monks lived. The hill was also known as Thiruvuruvagam.Samanar Malai has several Tamil-Brahmi inscriptions, a number of stone beds and many sculptures, which shows authority for Jainism in the ancient Tamil country. The hill contains two famous sculptures, Settipodavu and Pechipallam, that show images of Jain Tirthankaras made by Jain monks in the 9th century BCE. The Settipodavu contains the image of Mahavira, the last tirthankara of Jainism. The Pechipallam contains eight sculptures, including Bahubali and Mahavira.Archaeologists have also found 2000-year-old Tamil-Brahmi inscriptions and Vatteluttu writings. The inscriptions reveal that hundreds of Jain monks took sallekena (fast unto death) there. There are flat rocks, called stone beds, used by the monks to take rest.
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Samanar Hills Reviews
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  • This is a place for one who has interest in archaeology. The place is not being maintained and not a usual place for tourism. But it has historical value and has to go by walk to explore more.  more »
  • If you are a history buff, you would really love this place. Though this place is maintained by Archeological survey of india, it is not really "maintained". Please do not go alone as this path leadin...  more »
  • This is not the usual places one visits in Madurai. We had hired a taxi and showed driver the place on google maps. The communication was a little difficult but we could make it here. We did not know ...  more »
Google
  • Good place for some weekend picnic The area has a lotus pond surrounded by many banyan trees. It's one among the 14 smanar hills around Madurai. It's an archeological site of smanars and a spiritual site of Jains. It's not comfortable for people with wheel chair and crutches as you have to climb uphill to reach the site. You have steps with hand grip which makes climbing little easy.

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